The Slaves – Spirits Of The Sun (Digitalis DIGIV042 – 2012)

A new artist under the colorful musical umbrella of Digitalis Recordings and a spectacular touchdown by the duo from Portland, Oregon. Contrary to my expectations the release has a rather tranquilizing effect, meaning the descriptive tags attached by the label – drone, heavy noise or doom – should be handled with care. Digitalis is often pretty excited about musical extremities, like in this year’s longplayers by Decimus or Perispirit, but the The Slaves’ album is rather a distant relative of lush synth excursions by Panabrite or Ricardo Donoso. The Spirits is positioned between white and black. Not the music from dark and humid cellars, but rather […]

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Blawan – Long Distance Open Water Worker (Black Sun Records BSR05 – 2012)

No-nonsense functional tool by the young and already prolific techno wizard, spraying a hefty dose of testosterone into the air. For the German imprint Black Sun, the Brit has constructed a hybrid of modulated voices and banging beats.The best for the start: Bouncing bass rampage makes “Scarborough Harbour” a techno track to beat in 2012. Alienated jabbering reminding of „Male Stripper“ and fast-forward tribal rattle are the ingredients for psyched-out moments on the floor. Hi-hats and fat bass push the compressor funk of “Breathe Them Knees In” and “Grafter Gets A Home“ bites with industrial-tainted programming on repetitive, but in the same dull […]

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Various – Nonnative 02 (SEMANTICA NNN 02 – 2012)

Release date is August 2012 Iori Asano’s “Floating Matter” is the highlight on the second installment of Semantica’s Nonnative series. The title could not better express the powerful yet buoyant nature of the EP’s opening track – booming bass is complemented by floating sequences we know from Iori’s earlier output on Silent Season and Prologue. Follows Planet Rouge recording artist Alexey Volkov with “Run Out”, a heavy-chord interpretation of Detroit techno. The B-side is opened by Tom Dicicco, with the first moments of “Identity” signaling tensions of a crime scene before the track grows into a solid bouncer with alarming […]

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Kid Machine – Replicants EP (Viewlexx V​-​023 – 2012)

Well in time for the sun and sea comes “Replicants EP”, hot-blooded italo tribute by Viewlexx’s new signing Kid Machine. In the spirit of Rimini and the label’s cosmic heritage, the composer from the Northwestern part of UK provides six pieces of space romanticism. Harmonically built title track, where the vocal sample sounds like republicans, and sugary “Cold Planet” are the highlights in an array of uncomplicated melodies and rhythms. For not leaving a too sweet aftertaste, “Night Freaks” features some cyborg vocals on thriving synth hooks. Solid fuel for all sci-fi and disco nerds out there. <p><p><p><p>&<span class=”goog-spellcheck-word” style=”background-color: yellow; background-position: initial […]

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Decimus – #11 (Digitalis Recordings DIGIV041 – 2012)

Now there is an opportunity to perceive the processes inside the brain of Decimus [Junius Brutus Albinus], the assassin of Julius Caesar, with about forty-five minutes of chaotic and depressed sound experiments. A-side is introduced by double bass and classical notes before subtle H-bomb percussion and frightening moaning enters the stage. Despite of presence of some harmonic riffs it’s mostly about a subdued drone storm. B-side opens with waves of distortion, accompanied by melodic strings and processed voices before proceeding to far-out sound protuberances. “#11” is like from the minds of a burned-out philharmonic orchestra seeking wilder side of life […]

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The Trash Company – Pluto (Peoples Potential Unlimited PPU-036 – 2012)

Andrew Morgan’s Peoples Potential Unlimited introduces another hidden talent. Max E. Monroe, the man behind The Trash Company, started composing in 1970’s and is only now preparing his first album for Steady Sounds. Before that, a single works as an appetizer. The A-side of the wide-hole seven-inch suggests to wear a neon headband for full-bodied 1980’s synth funk titled “Pluto”. On the flip a real mid-tempo power cut called “For The Hook”, a robotic crossover reminding of Robert Hood’s “Rhythm Of Vision”, Syncom Data’s metallic dub funk and Fortran 5’s chopper techno. To round up the story about Monroe, this […]

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Ekoplekz / Wanda Group – Dead Escalator Suite / Slow Down Your Blood (Further Records – 2012)

If the demand for tape decks would skyrocket, Seattle’s Further Records is a culprit behind the trend. They come again with several cassette releases, which are, for the not-so-cools, available in digital too.Two artists have contributed to a split album. It’s opened by Ekoplekz of Mordant Music fame, who in “Dead Escalator Suite” loads the A-side with dub mash-up in an abandoned dancehall. After stumbling over dead wires on the floor, distortion knobs are found and the rhythm powered by fire-spitting engines. Combining excerpts of urban noise with rusty electronics, the track offers demanding polyrhythmic moments with mechanical hum and […]

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DUST OFF: Helical Scan – Index (Chain Reaction CR-11 – 1996)

If I should be in an awkward situation to choose only one release from the Chain Reaction’s amazing catalog, I would point the finger to “Index” by Helical Scan. Released as one-off project by Robert Henke AKA Monolake in 1996, it’s a tour de force of mechanic sound language. Especially the A-side’s “Index I” goes well beyond the definition of dub techno, if we think of Basic Channel or Deep Chord classics. Kicking off with nautical hum and minimalistic beat, it arises into a complex dub construction hammering like a robust hydraulic press throughout entire 10+ minutes. “Index II” on the […]

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